P.J. Wallbank Springs, Inc. is teaming with St. Clair Community College to help spur continued growth - P.J. Wallbank Springs, Inc.
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P.J. Wallbank Springs, Inc. is teaming with St. Clair Community College to help spur continued growth

Since 2013, St. Clair County Community College has used state dollars to help train hundreds of employees for local businesses.

This year it will be delivering $180,000 in new training as P.J. Wallbank Springs Inc. looks to add 68 jobs and to invest $803,000 to expand its Port Huron facility.

Shannon Cruickshank, SC4 business development coordinator, said the training will help a portion of the new positions. It can also be used to train current employees to move up in position so their current jobs can be filled with new hires.

P.J. Wallbank Springs was founded in Port Huron in 1982 and has about 90 employees. It designs and manufactures spring packs for automatic transmissions.

The company plans to fill the new positions over the next two to three years. The job training dollars must be used within five years.

The training can include skilled trades and engineering training, health and safety and leadership skills offered at SC4 and onsite.

P.J. Wallbank Springs was also awarded a $350,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant to use toward training and employee recruitment. The facility at 2121 Beard St. was chosen for the expansion over competing sites in Germany and China.

Company President Chris Wallbank said in January construction of the addition was tentatively planned for spring.

The company expects to double its sales to China and triple sales to Europe in the next three years as it doubles production in Port Huron, according to SC4.

SC4 has similar job training agreements with local businesses totaling more than $1.4 million, including Eissmann Automotive in Port Huron, SMR Automotive Systems in Marysville and IAC St. Clair in St. Clair.

Cruickshank said about 130 employees were trained in 2016.

Businesses are eligible for the training agreement if they plan to hire full-time employees into newly created positions that pay a minimum of $15.58 per hour.

Employers interested in participating in the Michigan New Jobs Training program can contact Cruickshank at (810) 989-5562.

People interested in applying for a job at P.J. Wallbank Springs can visit pjws.com/jobs.

A message left at the company was not immediately returned.

Contact Liz Shepard at (810) 989-6273 or lshepard@gannett.com. Follow her on Twitter @lvshepard. 

Source: http://www.thetimesherald.com/story/news/local/port-huron/2017/03/13/sc4-partnering-pj-wallbank-springs/99116464/